The UK tech community has welcomed Rishi Sunak’s appointment as Prime Minister, with the former chancellor receiving a particularly warm welcome from the fintech sector.

Sunak, the first Briton from Asia to hold the post, officially became prime minister on Tuesday following the resignation of Liz Truss last Thursday. Britain’s 57th prime minister faces a similar one technical into the tray Trasu, who held this position for only 49 days.

These issues include the development of the UK’s semiconductor strategy, the regulation of cryptography and the Internet Security Bill.

But in the short term, the tech industry is looking for stability after weeks of market turmoil caused by the Truce controversy mini budget. The initial reaction from the UK tech industry is one of cautious optimism.

“Rishi Sunak has experience in technology and investment and his time as chancellor has demonstrated his credentials as an ambassador for the industry,” said Russ Shaw CBE, founder of Tech London Advocates and Global Tech Advocates.

Shaw pointed to Britain’s Global Investment Fund and the £1.4 billion Futures Fund, set up to help British businesses struggling financially as a result of the pandemic. Sunak used to support Khalifa Review of UK FinTech along with championing fintech, cleantech and cryptography, Shaw added.

Sunak’s crypto and fintech track record

During his tenure as chancellor, Sunak said he wanted to make Britain “a global hub for cryptoassets” and asked The Royal Mint to create an irreplaceable token (NFT). However, this has not yet been implemented.

Charlie Cooper, managing director of blockchain startup R3, said political instability could hurt the country’s chances of becoming a crypto hub.

“Many financial institutions are recognizing the potential of blockchain and distributed ledger technology,” Cooper said. “The sooner the political situation in the UK stabilizes, the more likely these firms will take the next step to integrate these deep innovations into their services and business models.”

Sunak has previously spoken at fintech events and often spoke in support of the sector during his time as chancellor. Fintech industry Innovate Finance congratulated Sunak on behalf of its members and said it looks forward to working with him as Prime Minister.

“He has been a supporter of Finech, commissioning the Kalifa Review, reaching out to the IFGS and committing to making the UK the best place in the world to start and grow a crypto business,” Innovate Finance said.

David Brown, CEO of Payroll FinTech Hi, said the new PM could be a positive step for the FinTech space and highlighted Sunak’s presence at Fintech week last year.

At the event, Sunak talked about plans for Scalebox FCA as a result of the Khalifa Review and expressed support for the Industrial Center for Finance, Innovation and Technology.

“The slowdown in investment threatens to stifle fintech innovation in the UK, and the industry now needs strong, stable leadership to help the UK cement its place as a world-class fintech hub,” said Brown.

Despite the threat of a slowdown in investment, the latest statistics from Innovate Finance show that UK fintech investment is up 24% in the first year compared to 2021, said James Lynn, co-founder of travel debit card provider Currensea.

“The Prime Minister’s continued support for fintech will be vital to encouraging more innovation in our world-class financial services industry, ensuring the sector continues to thrive and maintain its position as one of the world’s leading fintech hubs,” Lin said.

“Market stability will be a priority”

Away from fintech, Sunak will need to rebuild confidence in the UK economy. The chief executive and founder of medical device maker NuroKor Bioelectronics, Rick Rowan, said the next prime minister must put the interests of British companies and families ahead of political infighting.

“The country desperately needs a leader with the authority and experience to develop (and implement) sensible, cost-effective plans to rebalance the economy and prevent further chaos,” Rowan said.

“The stability of the market will be a priority. Sunak’s first leadership campaign was based on a promise of fiscally conservative policy, which has already pleased the markets and given the pound a boost,” said Andrew Megson, CEO of My Pension Expert.

However, Mr Sunak should focus on the emergency relief for the British people and confirm his views on rules such as the triple lock or cuts in benefits, Megson added.

Another issue that should be on the prime minister’s agenda is privacy, said Colin Hayhurst, CEO of British search engine Mojeek.

“Differentiating and protecting against the US and Chinese surveillance economies is vital to our economy and security. We must be mindful of the external scrutiny that comes with foreign funding and stand behind those who try to preserve the independence of British companies.’

Meanwhile, the investment world was optimistic that the former investment banker would get the keys to Downing Street. IQ Capital said it looks forward to working with Sunak to help build the UK’s deep technology sector and innovation economy.

“The appointment of Rishi Sunak as PM strengthens the opportunity for the entire venture capital ecosystem to build on the positive growth of recent years and continue to work on the technologies of the future,” said Kerry Baldwin, co-founder and managing partner of IQ Capital.

Rishi Sunak has ‘credentials’ to be tech industry ambassador – reaction to Britain’s new PM